A crowd of approximately 250 fans packed into the Salons in the Barnhardt Student Activity Center, Thursday evening for the Charlotte 49ers first Football Signing Chalk Talk Reception.
Head coach Brad Lambert and his staff highlighted the careers and playing styles of all 25 members of the 49ers historic class of first signees.
"What a tremendous crowd," Lambert said. "It speaks to the excitement for the program. You guys have been just as important in our recruiting -- our students, alums, the community -- the guys would talk about that excitement. They could feel it. They could see it."
From the moment Lambert discussed the 49ers first official signee, Will Thomas, through the talk of the first verbal commit, signee Alan Barnwell, to the corps of defensive backs that assistant coach James Adams highlighted, videos played, fans cheered and the 49ers took another step closer to the inaugural 2013 season.
Notable was the audible reaction to Mason Sledge powering over a running back on his way to the quarterback. There were a string of great catches, great runs and big hits. Words like "special", "aggressive" and "lock down" were scattered through the descriptions as the coaching staff brought the first class to life.
The two-hour event also showcased the personalities of the 49ers coaching staff and gave fans a closer look at the men that will be leading the 49ers program.
As the various coaches spoke about the players, Lambert walked to the side and watched the videos -- with a certain pride -- and a certain excitement.
Soon those players will be playing on his field.